Chekmenev, Morgan Receive 2017 Distinguished Investigator Awards

Today, Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) Department of Radiology faculty Drs. Eduard Chekmenev and Victoria Morgan received 2017 Distinguished Investigator awards from the Academy of Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research.  

The award, which recognizes individuals for their contributions to the advancement of imaging research and the role of radiology in health care, was presented this year to 19 researchers at the Radiological Society of North America Annual Meeting in Chicago.

In the Academy’s June press release, VUMC Radiology Chairman and co-chair of the Academy’s Distinguished Investigator Council Reed Omary, M.D., M.S., said, “The recipients of this award have made significant contributions in the field of imaging research that rank them in the top 10 percent of Radiology Department faculty nationwide.”

During their careers, Drs. Chekmenev and Morgan have made several accomplishments and have exhibited long-term commitments to radiology research.

Dr. Chekmenev’s research is focused on the development of hyperpolarized contrast agents for their use as novel contrast agents, which can probe metabolism and organ function in real time using molecular Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Ultimately, he said, this will lead to new, low-cost, high-throughput MRI. Dr. Chekmenev has also coauthored more than 100 peer-reviewed research papers and patent applications, most of which were published while at VUMC.

As a new investigator, Dr. Morgan became interested in the quantification of brain networks using MRI, and how it could benefit the field of epilepsy. She has received funding from the Epilepsy Foundation and the National Institutes of Health to identify changes in networks across the brain related to seizure propagation and seizure-related cognitive decline. She is currently applying network measures to accurately predict treatment outcomes to shift current clinical practice of these patients.

“I am excited and honored to receive the Academy for Radiology and Biomedical Imaging Research Distinguished Investigator Award this year,” said Dr. Morgan.

Drs. Chekmenev and Morgan will join Vanderbilt Radiology faculty Drs. Omary, Jeff Carr, Li Min Chen, Bruce Damon, John Gore and Charles Manning who have also received the prestigious Distinguished Investigator award. 



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Eduard Chekmenev, Ph.D.

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Victoria Morgan, Ph.D.